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NINECO INTRODUCES FIRST E-MERCIAL: New Technology Adapts TV Commercial Programming for the Internet
BOSTON, MA - January 18, 1999 - nineCo, the premier online database marketing company, today introduced the first e-mercial. Like TV commercials, e-mercials are full-screen advertisements shown during breaks in programming - the award-winning, massively-multiplayer Web game shows on nineCo's popular Gamesville.com site. Using its database of over 1.2 million registered Gamesville.com players, nineCo offers sponsors the ability to precisely target consumers and consumer groups, increasing the efficiency and effectiveness of campaigns. nineCo's extensive, fast-growing database of users - each of whom have given permission for their profiles to be used - allows the company to target specific individuals in realtime, based on hundreds of factors including gender, income, profession and geographic location by zip code. Plus, nineCo customizes the technologic complexity of the ads (and the entire Gamesville.com experience) to suit each player's specific computer equipment (browser, operating system, etc.,) allowing for seamless delivery of all "rich media" formats, including streaming video and audio and pre-populated interactive e-commerce opportunities, entry forms and enrollments.
The e-mercial is an entirely new form of 1:1 targeted, interstitial Web advertising which shows individual viewers full-screen, long-form advertisements their profile indicates may interest them. In much the same way television capitalizes on viewers acceptance of commercial breaks in shows, the e-mercial capitalizes on Gamesville.com players willingness to view ads between the site's regularly scheduled game shows - which start every ten minutes, but are designed to last eight minutes maximum, creating mandatory "Intermissions" between game shows of two minutes minimum duration. By creating this TV-style programming for the Web, nineCo's e-mercial allows Internet marketers opportunities to target eager eyeballs with large-format, immersive messages for extended periods of time - a considerably more effective, efficient, creative vehicle than the current standard Web ad format, the tiny "banner" ad which appears on screen for a scant few seconds.
Originally launched in April 1996 as BingoZone.com, Gamesville.com contains easy-to-play, massively-multiplayer, interactive game shows in which cash and merchandise prizes are continuously awarded to winners - currently more than 14,000 prizes per month (including $1000 cash prizes and all-expense paid vacations!) Simply by filling out a short site-registration form, people are immediately able to win prizes by beating fellow Web game show players in one of 578 continuously running games per day. The anticipation of winning prizes entices users to provide accurate information about themselves (to ensure Gamesville.com winnings are sent to the correct person and address) and to continuously update their profiles - every month many thousands of players provide the site with address changes!
"In the past, advertisers have taken a buck-shot approach - strewing miniscule banner ads across numerous Web sites in the hope that someone in their target group will notice the tiny call-to-action and decide to abandon what they're doing and visit the sponsor's real ad - their web site," said Steven N. Kane, president of nineCo. "We're moving marketers away from this expensive, inefficient, scattershot approach to a previously unavailable, immediate, focused and measurable method of Web advertising, the e-mercial. Our interstitially-programmed Gamesville.com game shows and e-mercials create a mutually-friendly immersive environment in which consumers and marketers are happy to be together - a high-traffic, full-screen, rich media, long duration environment, enhanced with the specific targeting made possible by our large, deep database of people who have given permission for themselves to be targeted."
The e-mercial joins nineCo's existing targeted online advertising offerings which include:
Gamesville.com is the world's biggest game show site and the Web's premier entertainment destination (the site's slogan is "Wasting your time since 1996."). Dedicated to fun, easy-to-use interactive entertainment, Gamesville.com offers free massively-multiplayer game shows which pay winners a multitude of cash and merchandise prizes. The site's "low-tech" approach - "Yesterday's Technology Today" - ensures users with the most basic technology can compete effectively with those with cutting edge equipment. Gamesville.com is home to such popular (proprietary) game shows as Sports Madness™, Acey Deucey™, Picturama™ and Bingo Zone®. MediaMetrix has ranked Gamesville.com among the Web's top sites in visit duration. The site has also won numerous awards including NetGuide's "Best Game Site" and "Most Innovative Advertising Model." For more information visit www.gamesville.com.
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